Introduction to the Christian Faith
“And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God
and Jesus Christ whom you have sent” (NRSV, John 17:3)
Introduction to the Christian Faith was written by the Rev. Mervyn Pendleton MA and was based on many years’ experience of teaching both in church and school. It has been edited and revised where necessary for the Holy Faith website.
The work was written as a series of short talks which formed a three-year Catechism course for children. The course was delivered in church, but he also used some of the content as ‘stand alone’ talks for school assemblies. The talks were, of course, not read but delivered informally and he involved the children by, for example, the use of questions and answers.
Although written for children, older readers may find it helpful for filling in knowledge gaps or as a refresher course in the Christian Faith. Reading the section on the Creed, for example, may help some people to say the Creed more prayerfully and less automatically.
Introduction to the Christian Faith can be used for individual study or as a resource for those, including parents, who teach others about the Faith.
The suggested organisation of content areas for a three-year course is as follows:
The Church’s Year
Duty: the Ten Commandments
Faithfulness to God
Worship and Sacraments
Alive and with us always
Confirmation and First Communion classes for children
Introduction to the Christian Faith also includes summaries of talks to prepare children for Confirmation and First Communion.
Biblical references are included in brackets in the text. Other references are listed at the end of each talk.
Scripture quotations are mostly from New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright © 1989, 1995 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The initials NRSV are used at the end of these quotations.
A few quotations are from the Jerusalem Bible, copyright © 1966 by Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd and Doubleday & Company, Inc. The words Jerusalem Bible are used at the end of these quotations.